Letter From Our CEO

Posted Monday, March 30, 2020

Just a few short weeks ago, the JCCSF was alive with activity from the Fitness Center down to the pool, up in the gymnasium and throughout our studios, classrooms, preschools, and gathering spaces. Perhaps we did not take notice of the joy in a quick chat with a friend or holding the door open for another community member. Since we suspended in-person activity on March 13 in response to this massive public health crisis, so much has changed for each of us, our communities, and our world.

This suspension of in-person activities puts the financial position of the JCCSF into grave jeopardy. Eighty percent of our budget comes from income from programs like Fitness, Early Childhood Education, and Aquatics among others. We are expecting a revenue loss of more than $4 million dollars between March and May.

It is with profound sadness therefore, that I announce a temporary yet indefinite, halt to most of the JCCSF’s activities. The JCCSF is making a major reduction in staffing in order to reduce our expenses. Effective Saturday, April 4, approximately 70% of our almost 350-strong JCCSF staff community will be furloughed. Counting our seasonal staff, an excess of 450 people are affected. With continued support from the community, we are able to retain nearly 100 staff to serve our participant communities, and to organize the effort necessary to restart activity as soon as practicable. These active staff are taking a compensation reduction of at least 20% with leadership taking larger pay cuts.

I know you care about the people who are the JCCSF from the security guards to our teaching and instructional staff and beyond. We have already paid all regularly scheduled staff, full-time or part-time, through April 3 even during this closure. The JCCSF will continue to provide existing health insurance benefits through June 30 for all staff, including the costs of the usual employee contribution. We want them to stay insured, to stay healthy, and to have access to health care should they become ill.

For the JCCSF to weather this crisis, we need to have organizational and financial resilience to serve you, your families and our City. Please know that we are pursuing funding from newly announced government assistance programs, however the details are too unclear to rely on it at this point. Your donations will fund the people and activities that are critical to our ability to serve our community. We are heartened by the support we have received so far. If you have contributed already – thank you. If you would like to donate to the JCCSF Resilience Fund now, you can do so here. Your donations matter.

What will continue? JCCSF In Place programming will continue with daily online fitness classes and weekly live Friday Shabbat In Place, including our very first Zoom Community Seder on Wednesday,
April 8 at 6pm. Our Hebrew and a select group of other classes continue virtually. We have managed to keep a teacher for each of our wonderful preschool classrooms. And we’re looking for more opportunities to be of service should resources come available.

We’ve been part of San Francisco since 1877, through earthquakes and fires, booms and busts. We know you rely on us and we wish we had more to offer right now. However, when this latest crisis recedes, as it surely will, we will spring back into action, gathering people together of all ages and backgrounds in a joyful renewal.

#JCCSFLives
Hazak v’amatz / Be strong and Take courage

Marci Glazer
CEO